Gershom Carmichael (1672–1729) was the first professor of moral philosophy at the University of Glasgow, preceding Hutcheson, Smith, and Reid. His philosophy focused on the natural rights of individuals—the natural right to defend oneself, to own the property on which one has labored, and to services contracted for with others. Although he appealed to the authority of Grotius and Locke, the grounds on which he defended natural rights were distinctively his own. Natural Rights is the first modern edition and translation of his published works.
Until the publication of this Liberty Fund edition, all but one of the works contained in Logic, Metaphysics, and the Natural Sociability of Mankind were available only in Latin. This milestone English translation will provide a general audience with insight into Hutcheson’s thought.
This 1742 translation is a collaborative work by Francis Hutcheson and a colleague at Glasgow University, the classicist James Moor. Although Hutcheson was secretive about the extent of his work on the book, he was clearly the leading spirit of the project.